Blog

My thoughts on personal growth, clean beauty and motherhood

How to Switch to Safer Without Being Overwhelmed

If you’re looking to start using safer products but don’t know where to start, here is some advice I share with all my clients...

1️⃣ Slowly replace what you’re running out of with a better-for-you option.

Are you running low on foundation or concealer? Check out the new Skin Twin products. Need a good for any skin type AM/PM cleanser and moisturizer at a low price point? Check out Counterstart. Are you looking for better bath & body items?

Instead of walking to your local drug store for any replacement, fill your cart with those better-for-you options first.

2️⃣ If you’re in a budget and can only switch out one product at a time, start with the ones that are a) on your skin for longest (like makeup, moisturizers and sunscreen) or b) that cover the most skin area on your body (like bath and body products).

3️⃣ Trying best-sellers that are truly unique to Beautycounter.

I could recommend so many things to you, so let’s narrow this down to five very popular items that you will have a really hard time finding elsewhere...

❤️ Counter+ Overnight Resurfacing Peel

Formulated with 15 botanically-derived acids, this leave-on peel improves skin texture and minimizes the appearance of pores, fine lines and dark spots without irritation or over-drying. I definitely notice a brighter, more youthful-looking complexion when I use it regularly. Most of my clients report seeing an improvement in their skin in just one use! It’s super easy to use — just apply and let the magic happen while you sleep.

It’s recommended to use this one 3-4x per week after cleansing and before a moisturizer, and there is also a AM sister product called the Counter+ All Bright C Serum with added benefits of Vitamin C. It smells absolutely amazing and gives you an instant glow.

❤️ Dew Skin Tinted Moisturizer

This is a sheer tinted moisturizer with light coverage, but it has a SPF 20 built in. I wear the No 2 (Light) shade almost every day, and I love how it provides an extra moisturizing layer with a little color (and mineral sunscreen!).

❤️Counter+ Lotus Glow Cleansing Balm

This is perhaps my favorite Beautycounter product, and it can do basically everything. Moisturize, cleanse, treat, and soothe. It’s the most versatile product – as you can use it as a cleanser, makeup remover, moisturizer, or overnight mask. I even use it on eczema, scrapes, bug bites and to fade scarring. Seriously! I also have the travel size and take this on overnight trips instead of my regimen. You can also use it on dry and irritated spots on yourself and kids.

❤️ Counter+ Charcoal Facial Mask

This is a great weekly balancing treatment for most skin types, which exfoliates, detoxifies and helps minimize pores. It’s also wonderful for helping with breakouts. And if you watch my Instagram stories, you know I love my mask and serum!

4️⃣ Diving into a regimen, collection, or starter set.

What is the benefit to buying everything all at once and together, rather than piecing different products and lines together as you need them? Well, other than quicker results, you will generally get more for your money when you buy a set or bundle, as those are always discounted. It also takes the guess work of what you should do with and before or after what, which is nice. There are different regimens for different focuses, so let me know how I can help you here! What are your goals?

5️⃣ Outside of skincare, I recommend looking at the Flawless In Five makeup starter set or shopping a la carte.

6️⃣ Reaching out to me! I have so many tips on how to help you get the most out of your orders. I pride myself in creating the perfect cocktail of products for your individual skincare goals and needs, so the answer will always vary depending on who is asking and what kind of budget I’m working with. That said, read below for how you can generally get the most bang for your buck with Beautycounter.

MORE DISCOUNTS:

· Get 15-20% off site-wide now through April 27th. This is the biggest sale of the year, so now is definitely the time to start switching over if you’ve been thinking about it. The sale does not include our latest product launches, sunscreen, already bundled and discounted items like regimens, collections, Flawless In Five, or Get The Look starter sets.

· Purchase à la carte during a sale, but bundled when there isn’t one. I just did the math for a friend of mine who was looking to replenish her Countertime Collection and while the purchase as a whole is usually cheaper when bundled ($42 cheaper!), you can save an additional $22 purchasing everything à la carte with this site-wide sale.

· New to Beautycounter? Get 10-20% off your first purchase, depending on what promotion is currently running. This does not apply, however, when there is a site-wide sale going on simultaneously. But, you can save at least 10% on your first purchase any time by using a promo code that I have for you, so just reach out!

· Become a VIP member – join Band of Beauty for $29 and earn 10% product credit back (on every purchase), free shipping all year on orders $125 or more, a free welcome gift (right now it’s a free travel-sized Charcoal Facial Mask AND Overnight Resurfacing Peel – $55 value), and exclusive offers throughout the year. It’s like Amazon Prime meets Nordstrom Rewards of safer skincare and makeup and a must if you plan on spending $125 or more. No auto-renewals, no tricks, just savings.

Are you ready to switch to safer? Shop my link and/or refer a friend. Every referral earns you a free Starbucks from me and my eternal gratitude. 😘

Remember Your Mental Health Mask

I woke up this morning to 3 different “OMG! Is this for real?!” posts in my Facebook feed, linking to bogus doom & gloom articles about the state of the world. I felt I needed to say something...

As someone whose career is social media, I feel that, at a time when societal anxiety is off the charts, people need to remember to protect their mental health as well as their physical health.

We wear masks and follow health guidance to filter out this virus and keep ourselves and those around us safe. Please remember to wear a “mental health mask” when you’re online as well. Be careful of what information you consume and what you share with others. There’s a lot of toxic crap out there. That doesn’t mean you need to take it all in and/or pass it along.

If you aren’t sure if something is true, look it up and verify the info before sharing it with others. I’ve seen SO MUCH harm caused by internet trolls hooking people in with a salacious headline and people blindly sharing because it caught their attention (which is exactly what the trolls want you to do) without checking facts first. And it can cause widespread damage that just keeps perpetuating.

Remember, it’s on all of us to help each other through this. It’s been 10 months. The vast majority of people are tired, freaked out, depressed, or simply trying to cope. And we all have the power to either help them or harm them through our online activity.

Here are a few tips if you need them: 👇

- Trust your gut. If something seems off, it probably is.
- When it doubt, ALWAYS check your facts (and I don’t mean crowdsourcing online. Do actual research.)
- Follow trusted sources. Look at a link’s URL to see if it’s from a credible source. (Remember, anyone can write a blog and post it. That doesn’t mean anything they have to say is true or helpful to society.)
- Mute or unfollow accounts whose content cause you to feel anxious. It’s important to set boundaries for yourself. Life can be hard enough without taking their sh*t on too.

How You Can Advocate for a Safer Beauty Industry

Things you can’t unknow:

• The US hasn’t passed a major federal law governing the cosmetics industry since 1938.
• The EU bans over 1400
ingredients from personal care products.
Canada bans less than half of that. The US bans or restricts just 30.

Let that sink in.

This means that the ingredients in the products you use every day could be harmful to you and those you love.
Are you okay with that?

The good news is, we have the power to affect change by using our voices (and where we choose to spend our consumer dollars) to demand better. Here are 3 actions you can take today;

1. Text BETTERBEAUTY to 70734 (in Canada) or to 52886 in the U.S to ask Congress to take action.

2. Always support brands that put people and the planet first.

3. Shop & share safer products and educate others about clean beauty.

Overcoming Our Fears

If I wasn’t afraid, I’d be an accountant right now. True story. But one of the required courses for my University’s Business Admin program was public speaking. And I am deathly afraid of public speaking.

But despite opting for a career in print journalism (and later, social media) instead, public speaking is still often part of what I do, both as a leader and in business, in person and online.

When doubt sets in and my heart starts racing and my mind starts churning out all the “what if’s”, here’s what I do to push through:

5 Musts for Protecting Your Skin in Winter

Our skin always has us covered, and it’s vital to our overall health and wellness, yet many of us only pay attention to how it makes us look.⠀

Here are 5 things you can do to help protect your skin this winter;

1. Cover up. Cold air depletes our skin of moisture, so protect it from the elements at all times.

2. Keep skin hydrated by drinking water, moisturizing, and taking cooler showers (hot water also takes moisture from your skin)⠀

3. Don’t use harsh cleansers. Cleansers with harsh detergents strip away the healthy sebum you’re skin needs to thrive which can cause your skin to OVER-produce oil your compensate and lead to breakouts.

4. Use plant-based products that mimic the skin’s molecular make-up to nourish and fortify what nature gave you. Environmental toxins, including those in some beauty and personal care products may compromise your health and exhaust your skin’s natural defense mechanisms.⠀

5. Exfoliate 3-4 times a week to remove dead cells and avoid congestion.

Connect with me for personalized advice on how to keep your skin safe and healthy, or click the link for a personalized skincare quiz.

Mindfulness Hacks for Busy Moms

If there’s one good thing that I’ve drawn from this pandemic, it’s how to slow down.
I miss things like watching Noah play hockey and travelling to the farm to spend time with family, but in exchange, I’m learning to be more present in the here and now. Nothing in this life is more important to me than my children, yet my perpetual state of “busy” was telling them just the opposite.

Here are a few of my take-always:

1. Use your senses. Savour moments with loved ones through what you see, hear, taste and smell. One day, this may be all we have and I want to remember every detail.

2. Ask questions. Taking time to ask questions when someone is talking to you forced you to really tune in to what they’re saying and makes them feel listened to (in other words, valued.)

3. Put down the damn phone. What happens online isn’t nearly as fulfilling as what can be happening right in front of you. Savour it! Besides, what happens on the Internet stays there forever, but moments with friends and loved ones are fleeting.

4. Take care of your body. Pay attention to what goes in it and how it makes you feel. Treat it like a temple, not a trash can.

5. Be selective about how you spend every precious minute and consider how it’s serving you and those around you.

Hopefully you’ve found these reminders helpful. Feel free to DM me with your own mindfulness suggestions.

Sunday Shopping

A few of my favourite finds

Easy Chinos by Everlane

I love these pants for their comfort, but also for how easily they transition from super casual to dressy and everything in between. High waist with deep pockets. Easy is the perfect name for these.

Pierro Shirt by Sézane

This one perfectly embodies my excitement for Spring to come. It’s the perfect blend of style, quality and comfort.

Slim demi-boot jeans by Madewell

These are the best-fitting, most comfortable jeans I’ve ever owned. The company’s commitment to environmental stewardship and fair trade make me happy to support them.

Ynez Sweatshirt from Velvet

I could live in this super-soft fleecy sweatshirt. Incredible quality, and I love that the company supports causes like St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, National MS Society, The Art of Elysium and YouthAIDS.

Aged Terracotta Jar by McGee & Co

I’ve learned not to buy items just to fill a space. Choose them for how each one makes you feel every time you look at it and how well it works in the space it is for. A key addition for my built-ins.

Sunday Suppers Coffee Table Book

As I dream of gathering again with friends and family, this book gives me lots to look forward to. It’s beautiful to look at and is filled with fantastic recipes and gorgeous photos.

Rhett Lariat Necklace by Stella & Dot

I love the versatility of S&D lariats, especially with the mixed metals in this one. The weight is perfect (not too heavy, but I can feel it on) and it can be worn in many different ways for different looks. My favourite way to wear it is as shown with a cute button-down.

Sinuous Hoops from Simons

I just love the shape of these and how light they are. And they’re super inexpensive.

1 lb weighed Bangle from Bala

These are comfortable on your writers or ankles and add a little extra burn to your activities or workouts.

Briogeo Deep Conditioning Hair Mask

Deep conditions hair without sulphites, silicones, parabens or other potentially health-harming ingredients.

Faux Fur Jacket from H&M

This might be the coziest jacket I’ve ever owned.

Karman Coral Rug by Ruggable

My sister recently introduced me to Ruggable. It’s amazing what a nice throw rug will do to add life to a room. And the best part is, these ones can go straight into the washing machine for easy cleaning!

About

The only way to predict the future is to create it.

I’m Michelle, a wife, mom and social media pro who believes we are all here to make the world better any way we can. And I have BIG goals.

I got tired of the constant stress and uncertainty of corporate work - not to mention the hours of time lost to my daily commute - and decided to build a life on my own terms.

I’m a communicator, clean beauty advocate and passionate social seller. Like most people, I was raised to believe that a 9-5 job was my only option. I did that for years and felt trapped working to get OTHERS ahead, feeling undervalued and living paycheque to paycheque. That just wasn’t fitting with where my heart is... more time with my kids, less stress, a sense of community, opportunities for myself and my family, and to contribute to something truly meaningful.

Today, I’m on my way to not returning to 9 to 5 ever again and helping others do the same. I’m building a tribe of supportive, like-minded, goal driven women to surround myself with because I believe in the power of people to bring about positive change.

I value connection - talking about what we want out of life and what we’re doing to get there, how we’re challenging ourselves, what we’ve learned and how it helped us grow.
If this sounds like something you’re into, we should talk!

If you’re just here to watch what I do, that’s cool too, but please do stick around a while. I love to share content that hopefully inspires you and motivates you to become the best that you can be.

My Top Picks

My fave products for winter

#1 - Lotus Glow Cleansing Balm

The ultimate multi-tasker does more than just clean and hydrate. Yes, it removes makeup and impurities with nourishing ingredients that won’t strip away your skin’s natural moisture. But it has so many other uses too, like healing eczema, fading scars, stretch marks and dark spots, soothing burns and chapped skin, and treating “maskne.”

#2 - All-Bright Vitamin C Serum

This ultra-potent 10% blend of two forms of vitamin C instantly brightens skin and helps reduce the appearance of existing dark spots, while antioxidant-rich turmeric and camu camu extracts help protect against new ones. The formula also helps defend skin from the damaging effects of environmental stressors—revealing a more youthful-looking complexion.

#3 - Dew Skin Tinted Moisturizer

This sheer-coverage tinted moisturizer helps even skin tone as it protects against sun’s damaging rays with SPF 20 mineral sunscreen. The formula features a blend of black currant seed oil, peony root extract, and vitamin C to help brighten while leaving skin looking radiant. With continued use, skin will feel firmer and look more luminous.

#4 - Overnight Resurfacing Peel

Featuring a proprietary multi-acid complex, this leave-on AHA/BHA peel improves skin texture and boosts clarity without irritation or over-drying. With glycolic, malic, and botanically derived lactic acid, the formula clears away dull surface cells, while arginine and essential fatty acids help soothe to reveal a brighter, healthier looking, renewed complexion.

#5 - Countertime Lipid Defence Cleansing Oil

Inspired by Asian beauty rituals and informed by Japanese technology, this luxurious, lightweight cleansing oil gently yet effectively removes makeup and impurities without stripping essential lipids from the skin. Rich in vitamin E, fatty acids, and our plant-derived Retinatural Complex, the formula reinforces the skin’s fragile moisture barrier for a soothed, nourished complexion.

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